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When your patient is a “Public Figure”

Author

Related Institution

Philippine Journal of Internal Medicine - Philippine College of Physicians

Philippine Journal of Internal Medicine

Publication Information

Publication Type
Journal
Title
Philippine Journal of Internal Medicine
Frequency
Quarterly
Publication Date
July-September 2014
Volume
52
Issue
3
Page(s)
5-6

Abstract

Just who is a "public figure"? "A public


figure has been defined as a person who, by


his accomplishments, fame, or mode of living, or


by adopting a profession or calling which gives


the public a legitimate interest in his doings, his


affairs, and his character, has become a "public


personage." He is, in other words, a celebrity.


Obviously to be included in this category are those


who have achieved some degree of reputation by


appearing before the public, as in the case of


an actor, a professional baseball player, a pugilist,


or any other entertainment. The list is, however,


broader than this. It includes public officers,


famous inventors and explorers, war heroes and


even ordinary soldiers, an infant prodigy, and no


less a personage than the Grand Exalted Ruler


of a lodge. It includes, in short, anyone who


has arrived at a position where public attention


is focused upon him as a person."1 The Supreme


Court further clarified that "[S]uch public figures


were held to have lost, to some extent at least,


their right to privacy. "that they had sought


publicity and consented to it, and so could


not complaint when they received it; that their


personalities and their affairs has already public,


and could no longer be regarded as their own


private business."2 The Supreme Court went on to


state that "[t]he right of privacy of a "public


figure" is necessarily narrower than that of an


ordinary citizen."3


 
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